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Forever Alone – post-mortem

Posted by
Tuesday, December 20th, 2011 6:01 pm

So, I’ve taken part in my first Ludum Dare. It was also the first project I’ve actually finishd in Unity, the first project finished in over a year and I must say: it feels good to have made something. Here’s how it went (in my opinion):

What went well?

Keeping my ideas managable. I initially kept the interactions to the bare minimum needed to achieve what I wanted, then I added extras (such as averting the eyes from those who look at you) later. Even with these “extras” I still managed to get all the basic interactions working on the first day, leaving the second for sound design, level layout, figuring out how to enter LD and a bit of polishing/tweaking.

I also did fairly well at saying “good enough” with each aspect as it was made. Usually I spend hours on the most minor of details, which obviously wouldn’t have worked here, and I managed to not obsess over any particular aspect too much.

Sound. Maybe I’m biased, but I think the sound works pretty well. It’s very minimalistic like the rest of the game, but I think that actually works in its favour.

What didn’t go well?

I spent far too long just trying to make a very simple piece of music. It turns out that I didn’t really know what I was doing with FL Studio and my idea of just picking it up as went along wasn’t all that great. Audacity, which I’ve actually used a little bit before, was a life saver allowing me to do simple editing of the sounds that I couldn’t figure out how to do in FL.

There are still a few bugs, though most of them are quite amusing and don’t happen if you play “properly” so I didn’t really make any effort to fix them.

Not knowing how to use dropbox to share webplayer files (that took me a while to work out).

Lots of other things like “is the lighting quite right?”, “Should I have used more sound effects?”, “Is the pit of fire really necessary?” I don’t know how much difference these would have made though.

My indecision towards the end over what I should work on led me to faff around a bit and ultimately do none of the potential improvements (though this may have been a blessing in disguise since building and submitting took me longer than expected).

What I’ve learned?

I can make games in short periods of time :)

Indecision can kill a lot of time (isn’t that obvious?).

Knowing how to play one instrument to some degree and another to almost no degree does not mean I can use music creation software with ease, there’s actually a bit of learning for me to have there.

Little bits about finishing a game, sharing it online and the problems that don’t appear in the Unity editor.

All in all I’m happy with my entry, I’ve gotten a little feedback so far (mostly positive) and it seems the main thing I need to work on is probably my visual presentation. Hopefully I’ll get some more feedback soon… And if the themes stay this interesting I’d definitely like to compete again.


EXTRA: Here‘s what Procrastitracker thinks I did that weekend (minus 1hr 30mins I worked past midnight. I’m not sure if it’s very accurate).

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